:: Running from the Thought Police ::

Reality-Based Thoughts, Ruminations, and Unsolicited Opinions of a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign student alumnus and employee.
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:: Monday, May 31, 2004 ::

How Dense Can You Be?

A University of Kent student is suing his skool after being kicked out for plaigarism. His case: that the university didn't explicitly tell him it was bad, even though there were tons of notices all over the skool about it. Wanker.

:: The Squire 11:18 PM :: email this post :: ::


What Can You Do?

While my family (extended) was at a local restraunt after my sister's graduation, the Tornado sirens went off. Seeing as there was no place to go, what could we do? We just ate until the sirens turned off and the warning was over.

:: The Squire 5:03 PM :: email this post :: ::


Maintaining Proper Decorum

My sister's graduation was yesterday. While sitting through the reading of 300+ names (and some pretty crappy speaches, my class' salutatory and valedictory addresses were much better) I was rather forcefully driven to wonder when making an ass of one's self became acceptable behavior. Before any of the names were read the principal asked that everyone hold applause until the end, when the entire class would be presented and applause would then become appropriate. While at least half the families, including ours, held to this rule, many others applauded, yelled inane things, and blew whistles and (annoyingly) airhorns. My grandmother, who was sitting next to me, remarked that if her folks had made that much noise at her high school graduation, she would've been incredibly embarassed. Hell, if MY family had made such noise when I graduated, I would have been embarassed. At situations where appropriate (such as UIUC graduations) mild applause may be acceptable, but how hard is it to follow directions not to applaud until the end of the reading of names? Have my fellow human beings lost that much self control?

:: The Squire 4:52 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Friday, May 28, 2004 ::
Something To Bend Your Brain Around

The universe is shaped like a curved horn. I don't quite get it, either.

:: The Squire 1:08 AM :: email this post :: ::


As Always

Go read Krugman.

People who get their news by skimming the front page, or by watching TV, must be feeling confused by the sudden change in Mr. Bush's character. For more than two years after 9/11, he was a straight shooter, all moral clarity and righteousness.

But now those people hear about a president who won't tell a straight story about why he took us to war in Iraq or how that war is going, who can't admit to and learn from mistakes, and who won't hold himself or anyone else accountable. What happened?

The answer, of course, is that the straight shooter never existed. He was a fictitious character that the press, for various reasons, presented as reality.

:: The Squire 12:24 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Thursday, May 27, 2004 ::
Something To Look Forward To

Once I get back to skool I should be able to post photos on the blog. Isn't that just special?

:: The Squire 10:34 PM :: email this post :: ::



Just for the hell of it.

:: The Squire 10:22 PM :: email this post :: ::


Remember To Wear Your Tinfoil Hat

Hesiod boards a black helecopter and postulates that Zarqawi is in fact a US agent.

:: The Squire 8:31 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Tuesday, May 25, 2004 ::
The Bushies Are Really Desperate

Not only do they have Shrub doing a crapload of speeches, but they're now going to their old standby - the non-specific terror threat. They've done this before and nothing happened beforehand. They haven't even bothered to raise the alert level and turn the left half of this screen orange.

:: The Squire 11:22 PM :: email this post :: ::


As Always

Krugman's column today is good.

Republicans, we hear, are frustrated by polls showing that the public has a poor opinion of George Bush's economic leadership. In their view, the good news about Mr. Bush's economic triumphs is being drowned out by the bad news from Iraq.

A recent article in The New York Times, citing concerns of "Republican elected officials, pollsters and strategists," put it this way: "The creation of nearly 900,000 new jobs in the last four months — a development that might otherwise have redefined the race in Mr. Bush's favor — has been largely crowded out of the electorate's psyche by images from Iraq."

Funny, isn't it? In 2002, Republican strategists used the impending Iraq war to distract the public from the miserable economic news. Now they're complaining that Iraq is taking voters' focus off the economy.

But is the economic news really that good? No. While the recent economic performance is better than in the administration's first three years, it isn't at all exceptional by historical standards. And after those three terrible years, the economy has a lot of ground to make up.

As always, I encourage you to read the whole thing.

:: The Squire 1:08 AM :: email this post :: ::


I Didn't Realize It Was Possible

...to be this ignorant. (Link thanks to Dave Barry)

A clinic spokesman said: "When we asked them how often they had had sex, they looked blank, and said: "What do you mean?".

"We are not talking retarded people here, but a couple who were brought up in a religious environment who were simply unaware, after eight years of marriage, of the physical requirements necessary to procreate."

:: The Squire 12:40 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Monday, May 24, 2004 ::
Shades Of Monty Python

The Wizard Tim warned him, but did he listen? Nooooo.

And in other news, there is now a nerd action figure. It doesn't have a PDA hip-holster, though.

:: The Squire 11:58 PM :: email this post :: ::


Attention, Female Readers!

I don't feel qualified to comment on this story, seeing as I'm male. If you, however, do want to comment, just drop me an email and I'll post it here.

:: The Squire 11:48 PM :: email this post :: ::


It Boggles The Mind

Who would let their children play on a floating pier in the middle of a flood-swollen river when said children didn't know how to swim?

:: The Squire 11:45 PM :: email this post :: ::


Student Trustee Nate Allen: A Job Well Done

...and thank God that his replacement won't have a vote on the board.

The News Gazette reviews Nate's year as Student Trustee, and ends up with a brief overview of the Chief flare-up as well. I'm not going to place the whole thing here, so go read it yourself.

:: The Squire 11:36 PM :: email this post :: ::



State Senate passes measure to help the university keep spam out of my inbox!

HB 6574 would allow the UI to deny a Freedom of Information Act request that it disclose employee and student e-mail addresses if it is likely to result in unsolicited mass e-mails, or spam.

Requests from the news media would be exempt from the legislation.

The bill, sponsored by state Sen. Rick Winkel, R-Urbana, was prompted by a Freedom of Information Act request last year from a Texas entrepreneur who used the information the university provided to send a flood of unsolicited e-mail advertisements. The list was then sold to other companies, which are apparently using it to spam university e-mail accounts, said state Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, D-Urbana, the bill's House sponsor.

The measure now heads back to the House for approval.

:: The Squire 11:32 PM :: email this post :: ::


Not Suprising

The GOP supports the Chief.

The Illinois Republican Party amended its official platform over the weekend to include a section in support of Chief Illiniwek, the embattled mascot of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Like attracts like, I guess. I'd be suprised if any large number of people actually base their vote on this issue, though. I hope not, at least.

:: The Squire 11:25 PM :: email this post :: ::


Mr. Hammer, Meet Mr. Nail

The NYTimes hits it on the head in its editorial on Shrub's speech.

If President Bush had been talking a year ago, after the fall of Baghdad, his speech at the Army War College last night might have sounded like a plan for moving forward. He was able to point to a new United Nations resolution being developed in consultation with American allies, not imposed in defiance of them, and to a timetable for moving Iraq toward elected self-government. He talked in general terms of expanding international involvement and stabilizing Iraq. But Mr. Bush was not starting fresh. He spoke after nearly 14 months of policy failures, none of them acknowledged by the president, which have left Iraq increasingly violent and drained Washington's credibility with the Iraqi people and the international community. They have been waiting for Mr. Bush to make a clean break with those policies. He did not do that last night. The speech reflected the fact that Mr. Bush has been backtracking lately, but he did not come close to charting the new course he needs to take. His "five steps" toward Iraqi independence were merely a recitation of the tasks ahead.

Mr. Bush plans a series of addresses on Iraq before June 30. It was impossible not to wonder last night why he had waited until the security situation in Iraq had become disastrous, until Americans had begun losing faith in his leadership and, indeed, until just 37 days before a crucial new phase begins the transition to Iraqi sovereignty...

The president still has a number of speeches left to deliver before June 30. We hope he will use them to come up with a more specific plan, to stop listing the things we already knew needed to be done and to explain to us how he intends to do them. An acknowledgment of past mistakes would be nice.

One must wonder what the point of tonight's speech was. Since he didn't actually outline anything new, I'm even more convinced than I was before that the situation in Iraq on July 1 will be quite similar to June 1. (I.e., shitty.)

:: The Squire 11:12 PM :: email this post :: ::


Because It Doesn't Condem Democrats, The Media Won't Run With This

But it's nice to see that the almost never-ending campaign to be the next pope is at least attacking both sides of the aisle.

A senior American cardinal in the Vatican has accused the U.S. administration of "moral failure" and deception in Iraq and warned the war had severely compromised future relations with the Arab world.

In an interview due to be published in the June edition of "Inside the Vatican" magazine, Cardinal James Francis Stafford also said the abuse of Iraqi prisoners was the work of "barbarians." An advance copy was made available to Reuters.

Stafford, the former archbishop of Denver who has been working in the Vatican since 1996, said the reasons for starting the war in Iraq were a "moral failure" because there had been no conclusive proof of weapons of mass destruction.

"Why did the president, the vice-president and the secretary of defense say there was an immediate danger to the peace of American society by the proximate use of weapons that would come from Iraq, either directly or through al Qaeda?" he said.

"Why did they say that when they didn't have direct evidence?" Stafford said.

:: The Squire 12:33 AM :: email this post :: ::


Isn't This Just Special

I go on post-semester comatose hiatus and when I get back I find out that the Jack! Ryan senate campaign condones stalking. Josh Marshall (link thanks to every blogger on the planet) has the scoop, with additional commentary by Archpundit.

:: The Squire 12:06 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Sunday, May 23, 2004 ::
Disney Is Crap

How do I know this? They refuse to distribute Farenheit 9/11, even though it's won the Palme D’Or at Cannes. (Link thanks to Jim Capozzola at Rittenhouse Review).

:: The Squire 11:39 PM :: email this post :: ::


Possible Good News

Apparently there was a slight error in the reporting of CLCIV 115 grades, so my A- may possibly become an A, I hope. We shall see.

:: The Squire 11:36 PM :: email this post :: ::


Thankfully This One Isn't Going Away

The NYTimes (via Marisacat at Daily Kos) reports that Subpoenas have been issued over the Valerie Plame case.

For those whose memories are shorter than our Commander-in-Chief, after Valerie's husband, former ambassador Joe Wilson, published an article before the Iraq war showing the Nigerian uranium story to be complete crap, Ms. Plame's indentity as an undercover CIA operative was leaked to reporter Robert Novak. The leak itself was illegal under a law passed under Regan and heavily encouraged by former CIA director and then Vice President George H. W. Bush, Dubya's daddy. Seeing as the CIA protects its own, the entire agency was quite pissed off. After denying the incident the White House stonewalled, possibly rented some shredders from Enron*, and proceeded to try to minimize the millions of dollars (and possibly lives of contacts) wasted on political revenge. Ashcroft, deciding that he was way too deep in shit, recused himself from the investigation and appointed the US district attorney in Chicago, Patrick Fitzgerald, as special counsel. After that the story cooled off for a bit, until the inevitable suboenas start flying. Hopefully one or two will stick. There are standing bets in some circles over which WH Hack actually broke the law in breaking Valerie's cover, and hopefully those will be resolved by August, over a year after the original ordeal occured.

*OK, I admit renting shredders from Enron bit is a tad over the top, but they DID have the WH Counsel "review" all the files submitted to the Justice dept. after building in a 24hr delay between announcing cooperation and ordering all WH staffers not to destroy documents relating to the investigation. You draw your own conclusions there.

:: The Squire 10:52 PM :: email this post :: ::


I Doubt It'll Work

With only a month left before the June 30 deadline, the Miserable Failure is only now deciding to inform the American people about the (likely half-assed) plans for turning soverignty in Iraq over to the Iraqis. Since these plans weren't in place from the beginning, I fear that they're merely going to provide a veneer of progress so that Shrub will be able to pull troops out without (he hopes) completely trashing his approval ratings, already hovering below his disapproval marks.

:: The Squire 10:41 PM :: email this post :: ::


They Shouldn't Be Doing It Anyway

The California state assembly moves to ban teenagers from tanning booths.

Backers of the bill, including the California Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, blame tanning salons for part of 1 million new cases of skin cancer diagnosed every year in the United States. The group cited 7,400 deaths annually from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

"There is a big difference between going to the beach and a tanning salon," said the bill's author, Assemblyman Joe Nation, a Democrat. "When kids go to the beach they put on sun screen."

Of course, since this affects something that's actually bad for you, the GOP does one of its many about-faces and plays the personal liberty card.

The bill passed Thursday despite opposition from tanning salons and Republican lawmakers opposed to "meddling" in personal choices.

"If this bill passes it proves there's no part of somebody's life this Legislature won't stick its nose into," said GOP Assemblyman Ray Haynes.

What does this teach us? Yes, children, Republicans are bad for your health.

:: The Squire 10:36 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Thursday, May 20, 2004 ::
My Alma Mater Tests Student Body On Academic Honesty

Now that they've gotten their retreat program where they want it, my old high skool is now focusing on on something it's principle once spent two non-homilies (moderately long story) on: academic honesty.

The tests, administered Tuesday, were intended to measure students' attitudes toward cheating and plagiarizing in school. The students were not required to put their names on the tests.

"The purpose of the tests isn't to identify which students are dishonest," Assistant Principal Jim Brown said. "The purpose of the testing is to create a learning tool to determine and clarify the students' values toward honesty and academic integrity."

The testing and resulting follow-up are part of a requirement for the school's overall accreditation by the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. Benet, as well as other schools renewing their accreditation, must identify areas where they want to improve.

A survey of Benet students, alumni and faculty found that academic honesty was a significant goal to pursue.

"We didn't feel that academic cheating was any more prevalent at Benet than at any other school," Brown said. "We just wanted to see if we could find ways to prevent dishonesty if it existed."

As far as I know, I didn't cheat while at Benet and as I was out of the social loop I was by no means able to gauge its prevalence. It'll be interesting to see if the results of this assessment will come down the alumni news pipeline or if it'll be openly published at all.

:: The Squire 1:15 PM :: email this post :: ::


Ehhhh...Not So Good...

My GPA ended up only being a 3.08 for the past semester - no Dean's List for me this time around. Seeing as my grades were so dismal, I'll not post them here.

:: The Squire 12:58 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Tuesday, May 18, 2004 ::
You All Are Pervs

Just because I have a post on a story of an older woman flashing Ben Affleck I'm now getting a bazillion hits of people looking for pics of John Kerry's "hot daughter." Newsflash: this isn't a porn site! I don't have any.

Horny Bastards.

:: The Squire 3:06 PM :: email this post :: ::



Like so many other bloggers, I've lost track of how old my blog is. Two days ago this blog hit a year old. And I didn't even buy it a card! ::sniff::

On a more technical note, I've noticed that my folk's monitor is running slightly to the green side. Either its green is too strong or, more likely, the red is starting to die.

I still have limited online access (as we are still a one-phoneline and no-broadband house). My own computer is still in boxes - Apparently I'm going to get some new furniture in a few days (tall shelves) that should reduce clutter in my room somewhat, allowing me space to set up the computer and, possibly, remove my old desk from the room and replace it with one that's computer-friendly.

If you're itching for stuff to read/watch, you can always check the blogroll at left. There aren't any bad bloggers on it.

UPDATE: For those cruising on over here from Rittenhouse, this here blog is one, not two. Not that I'm complaining about the link...

:: The Squire 2:43 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Saturday, May 15, 2004 ::
Homeward Bound

The past day was spent working various graduations for IEMS, and tomorrow will be spent doing the same, as well as going home and packing. As such, I'm out of the loop news-wise and will be for the next few days until I get settled back at home. Please excuse the lack of posting in the meantime.

:: The Squire 9:33 PM :: email this post :: ::


Victory For Common Sense

Wisconsin's Attourney General shot the NO Child Left Behind act down.

Wisconsin's attorney general has issued an opinion that the federal government can't force states to comply with the No Child Left Behind Act without fully funding it.

The opinion released Thursday was the first in the country from a state attorney general on the education reform measure, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Attorney General Peg Lautenschlager said "clear and compelling" language in the law itself says the federal government can't make states or school districts pay the law's mandated costs for improved education.

The opinion could be the first step toward a lawsuit challenging the law, said Scott Young, NCSL education policy associate...

The law "doesn't really help education," said state Sen. Fred Risser, who asked Lautenschlager for the opinion. "Education needs smaller class sizes and well-paid teachers. This bill doesn't give any of these items. The law could cost taxpayers millions of dollars."

U.S. Department of Education officials didn't immediately return a message left at their offices Thursday evening.

I'm hoping our Attourny General, Lisa Madigan, quickly follows suit - this could end up saving the state craploads of money that it doesn't have by not having to fund such a stupid act. No school will get full compliance with NCLB, ever. It's unrealistic to expect otherwise - and to expect the states to pay for this is even more idiotic.

:: The Squire 5:19 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Friday, May 14, 2004 ::
Another Poll Thingy

Fight Club!

What movie Do you Belong in?
brought to you by Quizilla

...and yet another
Lupin - Defense Against the Dark Arts

Harry Potter: Which Hogwarts professor would you be?
brought to you by Quizilla

...and, making an appearance from the "No Shit" Department...

UPDATE: (Saturday) My gf has informed me that the last quiz image, as well as the WOSM flag I put in the blogroll, don't appear in IE and instead screw up the site. I use Mozilla Firebird myself, so I was unaware of the problem. The images have been removed until I become more proficient in HTML.

Oh, and Microsoft sucks.

:: The Squire 9:28 AM :: email this post :: ::


Brave Helios Wake Up Your Steeds, Bring The Warmth The Countryside Needs

Dawn is a feeling, a beautiful ceiling,
The smell of grass just makes you pass into a dream.

You're here today, no future fears,
This day will last a thousand years, if you want it to.

-The Moody Blues

:: The Squire 6:03 AM :: email this post :: ::


In Case You Were Wondering

Sir Patrick Moore does indeed play the xylophone.

:: The Squire 5:59 AM :: email this post :: ::


Here's An Idea

Have a bunch of CS students design an electronic voting system. The system should

be open source

comply with all state and national laws

generate paper balots that can be read by third-party ink-ballot reading machines

Such a system would be tested by holding a mock-election on the quad, simulating a precinct's worth of voting.

I think all that could be done in a semester or two.

:: The Squire 2:49 AM :: email this post :: ::


Fun Reading

The Bellman links to a recent article by Kurt Vonnegut. Yup, ol' Kurt's still kicking around and isn't too pleased with what he's seeing, so he does what he's always done best: pick up his poison pen and write scathing social commentary.

Eugene Debs, who died back in 1926, when I was only 4, ran 5 times as the Socialist Party candidate for president, winning 900,000 votes, 6 percent of the popular vote, in 1912, if you can imagine such a ballot. He had this to say while campaigning:

As long as there is a lower class, I am in it.
As long as there is a criminal element, I’m of it.
As long as there is a soul in prison, I am not free.

Doesn’t anything socialistic make you want to throw up? Like great public schools or health insurance for all?

How about Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes?

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the Earth.

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. …

And so on.

Not exactly planks in a Republican platform. Not exactly Donald Rumsfeld or Dick Cheney stuff.

For some reason, the most vocal Christians among us never mention the Beatitudes. But, often with tears in their eyes, they demand that the Ten Commandments be posted in public buildings. And of course that’s Moses, not Jesus. I haven’t heard one of them demand that the Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, be posted anywhere.

“Blessed are the merciful” in a courtroom? “Blessed are the peacemakers” in the Pentagon? Give me a break!

:: The Squire 2:29 AM :: email this post :: ::


ATTN: Parents

If your son/daughter is over 18 and at college, You do not control their lives any more. If they have a blog and it's not outright offensive, leave them alone.

Now, just because a guy's mom is a techno-phobe and a control freak, I have to change around my blogroll. I thought our society was beyond this.

:: The Squire 1:47 AM :: email this post :: ::


Pet Peeve XXXIV

Stupid People Debating Politics.

If you can't figure out that condemning your opponents for stuff you did for eight straight years is completely hypocritical, don't talk to or around me about politics.

...I also don't want to hear any more about the "Liberal Media." The media isn't liberal and hasn't been so since the GOP managed to hijack the press into following every assinine, made-up story about Clinton's past until something stuck.

:: The Squire 1:25 AM :: email this post :: ::


What Goes Around...

Katherine Harris didn't sign her absentee ballot form and was disenfranchised.

(link thanks to Dave Barry)

:: The Squire 1:01 AM :: email this post :: ::


Good News

The distribution rights to Michael Moore's new documentary, Farenheit 9/11, has been bought from Disney by the executives of Miramax and will be sold to a third-party distributor to make sure the documentary is seen (and that bunches of Miramax's money wasn't tossed down a hole.)

Disney is still evil, though, for not distributing the film in the first place. Their tax credits are too precious.

:: The Squire 12:44 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Thursday, May 13, 2004 ::
Yeah, That's About Right

From the Wa-Po review of Troy:

If you don't know the story already, you shouldn't be reading this review, you should be in school.

:: The Squire 11:56 PM :: email this post :: ::


I Am Done

For another semester, at least.

:: The Squire 8:49 AM :: email this post :: ::


They Need To Streamline The Process A Bit

A high schooler was caught cheating fumbling with his camera phone as he was trying to send a pic of his essay form to his friend.

:: The Squire 6:38 AM :: email this post :: ::


More Of The Same

If you would like to read more liberal-leaning blogs, check out Democratic Underground's blog listing.

:: The Squire 6:07 AM :: email this post :: ::


I'm Not Going To Say Much Now

...Esp. since I don't know too much about it, but Sec. Rumsfeld's suprise trip to Iraq seems to be something of a repeat of Dubya's own trip there. Beyond a show for the public, I doubt anything real is going to be done.

:: The Squire 5:59 AM :: email this post :: ::


Like Moths To A Flame

...do the bugs come and congregate about my monitor screen.

:: The Squire 5:05 AM :: email this post :: ::



Can't Sleep.

:: The Squire 4:56 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Wednesday, May 12, 2004 ::
Kerry's Shadow Cabinet Taking Form

As one of Kerry's big goals is to highlight the Dubya Administration's military incompetencies, the first slot to be talked about is, appropriately, SecDef.

In an interview with New York radio talk show host Don Imus, Kerry listed Sens. John McCain of Arizona and John Warner of Virginia as two possibilities, along with William Perry, who was defense chief from 1994 to 1997 during the Clinton administration.

He also added the name of Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan to what he said was a "long list" of "unbelievably capable" people who could take the helm at the Pentagon.

It is interesting to note that Gen. Clark (Ret.) isn't on the list. Maybe he's under consideration for SecState or, possibly, the coveted Veep slot.

:: The Squire 11:51 PM :: email this post :: ::


This Is Odd

Suddenly the Final Exam, Total Points, and Letter Grade fields in the MCB 253 gradebook disappeared. Was the final that messed up?

:: The Squire 11:27 PM :: email this post :: ::


Can You Say...


A handful of local doctors who want a closer place to pray than Bridgeview or Frankfort proposed the 22,000-square-foot Orland Park Prayer Center at 16530 S. 104th Ave. The 5-acre site, part of which was donated by a local dentist, is in unincorporated Orland Township and would need to be annexed by the village.

A crowd of about 200 listened to the plans, with the speakers evenly split between supporters and opponents. Those against the proposal, some of whom have begun circulating petitions, cited concerns over increased traffic, lower property values, who is funding the facility and the kind of worshipers it would draw.

"I've spoken to a lot of people and there's a lot of hesitancy from the community," said resident Valerie Jadin. "The world is a different place. We need a sense of security and a sense of confidence before we accept this project."

... Opponents say they fear some of the organizers may be linked to Bridgeview, which has faced controversy over its ties to hard-line Islamic leaders.

"There's a new crime in town. It's called terrorism," said Mary Nolan, an opponent. "We don't know who is funding [the Orland Park] project. We don't know who they are. I don't think we're being unrealistic."

The reaction in Orland Park is the latest in a steady stream of opposition to proposed Islamic centers across the nation following Sept. 11, said Kareem Irfan, chairman of the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago.

"We see this type of opposition coming in from across the country," Irfan said.

The Orland Park protests, which include letters claiming the facility would draw Islamic terrorists, appear more strident than those aimed in the past at planned prayer centers for Morton Grove and Palos Heights.

I'm amazed at how well the media/right wing has encouraged fear of muslims as "The Other." To steal an analogy from the West Wing, just as Christianity has the KKK and Christian Identity nutjobs, so too does Islam have its fundamentalist wackos. Most Muslims are decent people, just like most Christians are decent people. If you can't deal with that, don't go holding your irrational fears against other people.

:: The Squire 11:21 PM :: email this post :: ::


Boil Order Lifted

The following email came down the pipe from housing at 0900 this morning.

The boil order for campus buildings at the University of Illinois has been lifted as of 8:20 this morning.

Taps should be left running for two minutes before using the water.

The order was instituted Tuesday afternoon after a water main near Bevier Hall was breached and pressure dropped for about 30 minutes.

:: The Squire 3:22 PM :: email this post :: ::



Kos chews the cud and spits out his thoughts on Kerry's VP options.

:: The Squire 4:50 AM :: email this post :: ::


One Vote I'm Glad I Cast

Dick Durbin wrote an op-ed for Monday's USA Today calling for Sec. Rumsfeld's resignation. (I don't normally read that paper, which is why this link comes via Archpundit). Here's the opening graf:

Donald Rumsfeld should resign for one simple reason: Our troops will not be as safe and the success of our mission will not be served if he continues as Defense secretary.

The tragedy of Abu Ghraib and Rumsfeld's failure to understand the gravity of the situation and keep the president and Congress informed were, in my view, the deciding factors. But these are not isolated incidents; they are the culmination of a series of serious miscalculations, poor planning and mistakes in the war in Iraq for which the secretary must accept responsibility.

I suggest reading the whole thing - it's a good idea to keep tabs on what one's elected officials are doing. For me, it's nice to know that one of the few Democrats in congress with balls is representing my state.

:: The Squire 3:01 AM :: email this post :: ::


I've Got An "In"

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is coming out on June 4th. A friend of mine, whitney, is going to be working in a theatre this summer and will be watching the movie the night before to make sure there aren't any problems with the physical film itself. Hopefully she'll be able to find some internet access somewhere and send me a review to post here for all y'all to read.

:: The Squire 2:36 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Tuesday, May 11, 2004 ::
Some Final Grades

With only one more final yet to take, I already have some final grades.

Psych 100: B
Chem 331: B
ClCiv 115: A- or A, depending on how much my TA likes me.

I took MCB 253 today, and MCB 252 is Thursday evening. I assume that I recieved a Satisfactory mark for Chem 393, seeing as I finished all the requirements and attended all five lectures.

:: The Squire 9:03 PM :: email this post :: ::


Crass Consumerism

Cheat Commandos. 'Nuff said.

:: The Squire 7:17 PM :: email this post :: ::


More Finals-Week Reading

Dave Neiwert links back to a number of thoughtful bloggers commenting and extrapolating on his Media Revolt Manifesto. Go read the posts he links to.

:: The Squire 6:08 PM :: email this post :: ::


Great Quote

I don't condone the behavior, but I sympathize.

Some days, I'm not sure the republic will make it. Some days, I'm pretty sure it won't. Some days, I'm just drunk.

:: The Squire 5:56 PM :: email this post :: ::


Horay For The Vocal Minority

For it is they who percieve the need for change.

:: The Squire 5:40 PM :: email this post :: ::


Campus-Wide Boil Order

Apparently Blogger ate my previous post on this, so I'll try a second go.

Construction work caused a water main rupture. Until the campus water can be tested, the IEPA mandates that a boil order be in effect. Here's the official campus announcement:

A boil order is in effect until further notice for University of Illinois campus buildings.

A contractor hit a water main near the northwest corner of Bevier Hall (at the intersection of Goodwin Avenue and Gregory Drive). The water pressure in campus buildings dropped below an acceptable level but has since been restored. As a result, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency mandates a boil order until samples can be taken and analyzed. That will take at least 24 hours.

People in University of Illinois campus buildings should boil all water used for drinking and cooking until further notice. The water can be used for washing, but should not be used for drinking or cooking until deemed safe in accordance with the Illinois EPA.

A massmail was sent out with the same information at about 1415. The resident director had sent an email out to the residents about ten minutes previously.

Further information recently sent out by the RD:

A boil order is in effect until further notice for University of Illinois campus buildings, including residence halls and apartments. (Sherman Hall is not affected.)

Water may be used for showering and washing. The only possible threat from this water is if it is ingested. Do not drink water from any campus water fountain or bathroom sink.

Boiled water will be used for all cooking in University Housing Dining Services, and we will have canned soda, milk, and safe water for drinking at dinner.

Residents of residence halls may receive a bottle of water tonight (for brushing their teeth, etc.) at their area office beginning at 5 p.m. Daniels residents may go to their front desk. Please keep your bottle for refilling later if necessary. Additional safe water to refill a container can be obtained at Sherman Hall (909 South Fifth Street), any Private Certified Housing location (Illini Tower, Bromley, Hendrick House, any fraternity or sorority), or an off-campus site.

Residents of university apartments should boil water for cooking and drinking. Boil water for five minutes.

We will send another massmail Wednesday, May 12, with an update on the situation. Thank you for your cooperation.

As evinced by the latest email, only campus is affected, all off-campus residences are on municipal water systems and so are not affected by the boil order.

:: The Squire 4:50 PM :: email this post :: ::


It's A No-Brainer

Everyone should wear helmets when biking, especially if you're a college student or college graduate. You can afford the $30 to protect the thousands of dollars that have been invested in your head.

:: The Squire 4:48 PM :: email this post :: ::


They Get Letters

Apparently Blogger is getting tons of feedback over the redesign of the blogger interface. Here's their response to my comments:

The optional split-screen blogging interface preferred by some users has been replaced. Instead, one improved and streamlined interface is available to all Blogger users. Our decision to make this change was a response to user feedback and testing.

The new editing environment is a better workflow for the majority of our users. Additionally, supporting one default interface as well as one optional interface to Blogger was a strain on resources not to mention potentially confusing.

That being said, we have noted so far the major features of the old split screen blogging environment that people miss most. Fans of the two-pane layout were fond of the context it lent to the workflow; you could read your old posts while composing a new one. They also liked the calendar interface for browsing older posts.

Please keep in mind that this is the first iteration of the new interface. We continue to gather feedback and monitor response to this upgrade. Innovation and the implementation of new features is ongoing. Helping you create and browse your posts is a high priority and we will continue to enhance the Blogger editing environment for a good experience.

Blogger Support

:: The Squire 4:43 PM :: email this post :: ::


Helpful Hint

When writing a letter to the DI on an issue such at Chief Illiniwek, make sure you have your thoughts ordered and that your arguement makes sense. If no one can detect your sarcasm, and you're obviously not offering your opinion in good faith, maybe you should reconsider sending it in.

Also, if you're in ACES and aren't pre-vet, strongly consider other forms of communication, like grunting.

:: The Squire 3:27 AM :: email this post :: ::


Cute Kid

Aristotle, aka Baby Kos, has pics of himself up at fishyshark and crossposted over at the DailyKos main site. His birthday's November 2nd - let's give him a Democrat in the White House as a birfday present.

:: The Squire 3:13 AM :: email this post :: ::


Where Can You See Lions?

Only in Kenya.
Go to Kenya we've got lions!

Where can you see Tigers?
Only in Kenya.
Got lions and tigers only in Kenya.
Forget Norway.

Kenya, Oh Kenya
Where the giraffes are, and the Zebra

Kenya, Kenya, Kenya, Kenya

Kenya, Going to Kenya
Kenya believe it?

(There's a live version of the movie too. Kenya believe it?

:: The Squire 2:40 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Monday, May 10, 2004 ::
I'm Glad I'm Not In High Skool Anymore

The SAT and ACT have both been overhauled since I was doing the whole college admissions thing - adding essay sections to both exams (eww).

:: The Squire 8:50 PM :: email this post :: ::



I missed free giant shrimp. I guess it does help to be in the know.

:: The Squire 6:25 PM :: email this post :: ::



First of, baring one's chest in public should be done while not under the influence of alcohol or pheremones. If you don't follow those instructions you might find articles like this being published.

A fan flashed her breasts at Ben Affleck as he chatted with the daughter of US presidential hopeful John Kerry.

Affleck was with medical student Vanessa Kerry at a Washington dinner at the time, reports The Sun.

The middle-aged woman showed off her bare chest, exclaiming: "You are f****** gorgeous."

And the money quote:

An onlooker said yesterday: "It wasn't pretty."

:: The Squire 6:15 PM :: email this post :: ::


Awww, No Fun

The Blogger profile interface won't let me say I was born on April 31st.

:: The Squire 6:04 PM :: email this post :: ::


Not The Answer I Was Expecting

...But Fun Nevertheless.

You are Amiga OS. Ahead of your time.  You keep a lot of balls in the air.  If only your parents had given you more opportunities to suceed.
Which OS are You?

...This doesn't appear to be working to very well. I'll keep at it for a few minutes to see if I can get the picture to appear.

...OK, working now. For a geek-oriented site, the html for the quiz result was done pretty crappily.

:: The Squire 5:33 PM :: email this post :: ::


False Alarm

I should do google searches before I declare other blogs dead. Delocalized Ham has its brand spanking new domain and a spiffy new look.

:: The Squire 5:25 PM :: email this post :: ::


Finals Week Refrain

Ave, Magister, morituri te salutamus.

:: The Squire 7:18 AM :: email this post :: ::


For Future Reference

If you want to disparage nearly any language, look no further than here.

Y'all should know the drill by now, so it should come as no suprise that I have favorites.

Classical Latin is essentially Liturgical Latin with correct pronunciation. --Dan Seriff

Church Latin is essentially reverse-engineered Italian. --Justin Mansfield

Canadian French is essentially bad English as spoken by a Belgian with an inferiority complex. --Ivan C. Amaya

All Romance languages are essentially the same. Except French. --Andreas Johansson

Spanish is essentially Italian spoken by Arabs. --Benct Philip Jonsson

Polish is essentially Russian spoken by a Frenchman. --Daniel von Brighoff

Polish is essentially a light form of Russian that even Germans can master. --Jay Bowks

Polish is essentially any other Slavic language with 70% of its consonants randomly shuffled. --Basilius

Irish is essentially an Indo-European language cunningly disguised as gibberish to perplex the English. --And Rosta

Of course, English by no means escapes such treatment.

English is essentially bad Dutch with outrageously pronounced French and Latin vocabulary. --Eugene Holman

English is essentially a language that uses vowels no other language would accept. --Luís Henrique

Australian English is essentially Cockney without the refinement. --Öjevind Lång

American English is essentially English after having been wiped off with a dirty sponge. --J.R.R. Tolkien

American English is essentially a tool to keep a person from ever being able to speak another language. --jmallet

The Queen's English is essentially Modern Anglo-Saxon as passed on by generation after generation of stiff necked Norman nobles with their noses in the air. --ilvi

English is essentially Low German plus even lower French minus any sense of culture. --Danny Weir

Yankee is essentially 18th Century English as altered by the impure thoughts of Puritans with cabin fever. --Jay Bowks

English is what you get from Normans trying to pick up Saxon girls. --Bryan Maloney

English is essentially a whore. --Lars Hendrik Mathiesen

English is essentially a West Germanic language that's trying very hard to look like a Romance one. --Andreas Johansson

English is essentially language's equivalent to a transvestite. --Andreas Johansson

Midwestern US English is essentially New England English with their sinuses filled with ice. --Andrew Johnson

English is essentially a language that doesn't care where syllable boundaries are. --Peter Bleackley

Inglish iz issenshali a langwidje dhat, wen rittun fonetkli, iz ilejibul tu netiv spikerz. --Peter Bleackley

English is essentially the language of people who think that everybody else speaks their language. French is essentially the language of people who think that everybody else should speak theirs. --Peter Bleackley

There are tons more "essentially" quotes pertaining to languages I know nothing about and therefore I don't find the quotes funny.

If you'd believe it, I found this site using a search for Animaniacs and Conjugation. This happens to have what I was looking for, though.

:: The Squire 5:12 AM :: email this post :: ::


Really Odd

Toddler with a genetic disorder is incapable of feeling pain.

When Gabby teethed, she gnawed on her fingers until they were bloody. One day, as her father massaged her gums with his finger, she bit him, hard. When he reflexively yanked his finger back, one of Gabby’s teeth came with it. She didn’t cry.

When it comes to pain, she never does.

An extremely rare nerve disorder called hereditary sensory autonomic neuropathy Type 5 keeps pain sensations from reaching Gabby’s brain. Gabby, now 3, simply does not feel injuries that would make others cry out.

That might not sound so bad to anyone who has ever stubbed a toe. But it’s ruinous for Gabby’s health.

Pain is what keeps a child from poking her finger straight into her eye, as Gabby has done, repeatedly. Pain is why we limp to favor a twisted ankle, so it can heal. Pain teaches children to recoil from a hot stove.

When Gabby was teething, “she would chew on her fingers until they were bloody,” her father, Steve Gingras, recalled. “She would chew on her tongue like bubble gum.”

Don't you wish they told you about these types of disorders in HS? I bet you'd be more interested in biology if you knew about stuff like this.

:: The Squire 3:55 AM :: email this post :: ::


My Sixth Grade Science Teacher Would Be Appalled

But this is a great use of the Scientific Method.

Problem: Will people place bids in an auction, in hopes to get herpes?

Hypothesis: I think that people will bid in an auction, where the winner gets herpes.


This site could also be filed under "People With Too Much Time On Their Hands>"

:: The Squire 3:38 AM :: email this post :: ::


Because Such Things Need To Be Maintained

Dubya is an Unelectable, Miserable Failure. He also happens to be a liar and possibly a war criminal.

:: The Squire 3:08 AM :: email this post :: ::


William Shatner Isn't Lame

Because he knows that he's a pop icon and doesn't take himself seriously.

:: The Squire 3:04 AM :: email this post :: ::


So That's What That's For!

There's this new button for blogger called "Republish Index Only." I didn't know what that did - now I do. The current, new "Republish" republishes the entire blog, not just the front page. I was planning on keeping the archived pages in the original blue/gray color scheme, but since Blogger had to switch things around, now it's in maroon/dark gray too.

:: The Squire 2:45 AM :: email this post :: ::


Another One Bites The Dust

A blog run by a local computer science student has disappeared without a trace. As Delocalized Ham was not updated frequently, I only checked it every month or so. As it's been a month that the URL's been dead, I'm removing the link from the blogroll. If you do know where Delocalized Ham went, send me a line and I'll link to the new location.

:: The Squire 2:41 AM :: email this post :: ::


No Fun

The DI, instead of doing real news, has a self-congratulatory "Semester In Review" Issue out. Whoop-dee. If I want a year in review, I can go have a fun sit in the Newspaper Library.

:: The Squire 2:19 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Sunday, May 09, 2004 ::
ATTN: Professors

You need to write better exam questions than this.

:: The Squire 9:30 PM :: email this post :: ::


New Trend I Don't Like

I'm starting to see spam show up in my inbox that's dated one to two years ago. Either some spammer can't set his/her system clock right, or they're intentionally doing this to make spam show up in places you don't expect it so you pay more attention to it before it hits the round filling bin. Whatever the reason, it's annoying.

:: The Squire 8:43 PM :: email this post :: ::


Blogger's New Interface Sucks

Blogger redid their interface, so while the blog itself didn't change, the interface I'm using has been switched around. It's like all they did was add some shiny new graphics to the old low-bandwidth interface and hope most people with speedy internet connections wouldn't notice the similarities. This is my first post in the new interface and I'm already missing the old one with both the post being edited and the most recent posts all on the same screen. I've already asked how to get the old setup back (and I'm counting on many more bloggers also complaining so that they'll have to switch back to the old setup). They've also got this ugly tan-and-white color scheme going on and Pop-Up Video-themed graphics, but that's the least of my concern. I'm currently hunting through the new gizmos added to blogger, though I doubt many, if any, will be added to the blog.

:: The Squire 7:51 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Saturday, May 08, 2004 ::


I am not almost two decades old.

This is not allowed. I forbid it.


:: The Squire 3:25 PM :: email this post :: ::


What She Said

I need to read Teresa Neilsen Hayden's Making Light more often - she's got a very good list of what she believes, ending with the Nicene Creed. Amazingly, it tracks well for my beliefs too.

:: The Squire 12:43 PM :: email this post :: ::



That Al Qaeda-linked terror groups endorse Bush for president.

:: The Squire 12:23 PM :: email this post :: ::


Too Bad It's Not Enforcable

Court orders couple not to reproduce.

Monroe County Family Court Judge Marilyn O'Connor ruled March 31 that both parents "should not have yet another child which must be cared for at public expense."

"The facts of this case and the reality of parenthood cry out for family planning education," she ruled. "This court believes the constitutional right to have children is overcome when society must bear the financial and everyday burden of care."

The judge is not forcing contraception on the couple nor is she requiring the mother to get an abortion should she become pregnant. The couple may choose to be sterilized at no cost to them, O'Connor ruled...

The mother was found to have neglected her four children, ages 1, 2, 4 and 5. All three children who were tested for cocaine tested positive, according to court papers. Both parents had a history of drug abuse. It was not immediately clear if the father had other children.

A case worker testified that the parents ignored an order to get mental health treatment and attend parenting classes after the 1-year-old was born.

The mother was still in the hospital after giving birth to her fourth child in March 2003 when authorities took the infant, according to court papers. Investigators said the mother was unprepared to care for the infant.

Court-ordered Darwin Award - this has to be a first.

:: The Squire 11:54 AM :: email this post :: ::


New And Improved

And now easier to read, too!

:: The Squire 1:34 AM :: email this post :: ::



In line with the Media Revolt Manifesto, and in response to Disney's censoring of Michael Moore's new documentary, Farenheit 911, I am instituting a personal boycott of as many things Disney as I am aware of. This extends to ABC, ESPN, and the Muppets. I encourage others to do the same.

:: The Squire 1:05 AM :: email this post :: ::


Dave Neiwert's Angry About The Press

And justifiably so, as they've been instrumental in dumbing down the national discourse.

If the press were properly reporting on this election, the public would have a clearer picture of how John Kerry's economic, environmental and education policies would affect their lives differently than those purveyed by the Bush administration. It would understand the significant differences in their approaches to national security, and it would be far clearer just who in fact has more serious and credible credentials when it comes to the "war on terror" and keeping the nation safe, particularly when it comes to matters of basic competence and knowledge. These are issues that affect us in concrete ways.

But the press doesn't deal with those issues...

As a result, Dave has come up with the rough draft of the Media Revolt Manifesto. Go, read, get angry - you should be.

:: The Squire 12:59 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Friday, May 07, 2004 ::
More Motion

Senate Pres. Emil Jones sent the Board a letter asking to sit down and discuss the retirement of Chief Illiniwek.

I'm willing to see the Chief go and if the legislature has to strongarm the BoT to get it to happen, so be it.

UPDATE: Trib's got the story too. So much bloody drama. Jeez, just retire him already.

:: The Squire 9:36 PM :: email this post :: ::


A Place You May Want To Stop By

Bloggers United Against Bush is up and running. I suggest stopping by a few of the sites on the list if you don't already include them in your rounds of the blogosphere.

:: The Squire 8:51 PM :: email this post :: ::


Quick! Look!

Jim Capozzola's got a picture of Big Bird up for his Terror Alert photo.

:: The Squire 8:35 PM :: email this post :: ::


I Think I'm Done

...For now, at least. I don't think I'll be changing the hyperlink colors anytime soon, though if you have suggestions in that area I might entertain them. Comments on the color scheme can be directed to the usual place.

:: The Squire 4:25 PM :: email this post :: ::


Sorry For The Mess

I'm redoing the color scheme for the site. I aplogize for whatever eye strain this may cause.

:: The Squire 3:55 PM :: email this post :: ::


There Are 35-yr-old Computer Geeks Wetting Themselves Over This

Via The Bellman I see that a bunch of Computer Science students have created Pac Manhattan, a real-life Pac-Man game. They're getting course credit for it too.

:: The Squire 2:43 PM :: email this post :: ::



Something more worthless than kissing under the Eternal Flame (which I myself have only seen lit four times in the past two years).

:: The Squire 12:15 PM :: email this post :: ::


Bait And Switch

Why does CNN/Money think that 288,000 new jobs added in April "Rocks" when 360,000 new jobs a month were predicted by Dubya under his latest tax cut "stimulus?" Why is no one questioning Dubya's ability to get results. If it were a Dem in charge you could't walk 5 feet without hearing some GOPer decry presidential fiscal responsibility.

:: The Squire 11:33 AM :: email this post :: ::


Are They Blind Or Merely Not Observant?

The following wonderful statement popped up in a Friday Forum written by the Panhellenic Executive Board:

We do not support the Daily Illini's illustration of serenades as a "strip club" and do not believe our women have been portraying themselves as "prostitutes." Serenades have merely been inappropriate...

I'm sorry, but humping the floor and each other is not "merely inappropriate." The Panhellenic E-Board really needs to listen to Dave Chapelle's discourse about "Wearing a Ho's uniform," as well, seeing as they do not currently identify average serenade dress (ripped-off shorts with low-riding waists and midriff-baring tops that show more cleavage than a plumber's ass) with the world's second oldest profession. Seriously, are these women trying to prove certain other stereotypes about sororities true? It sure seems like they are.

:: The Squire 2:41 AM :: email this post :: ::


For All You Whiny Conservatives

...Who think that protesting doesn't work, here are some recent examples that it has.

Demian Kogan, PRC member, said they have been more active because of the lack of actions from the Board of Trustees on the Chief issue.

"Because they don't listen to our voices, we are forced to escalate our tactics," Kogan, senior in LAS, said.

Such escalation has allowed PRC to make progress.

"Victories of sit-ins have pushed the issue forward — we have received international media attention and meetings with key political leaders," Kogan said.

Kogan stressed the importance of group activism and explained why PRC protests.

"It makes people listen and forces accountability (on decision makers' parts)," Kogan said.

For other groups, like the Graduate Employee Organization (GEO), it has paid off to protest.

Matthew McClain, grievance officer for GEO, said they have had one protest this year, whereas a year and a half ago they held many more.

"All we had to have administration hear our concerns were rallies and protests," McClain said. "But now that we're officially recognized as a union, legally, the University must negotiate a contract."

For those that, amazingly, haven't noticed, protests (including civil disobedience) force those in power to deal with a problem they otherwise condone or would rather not deal with. If no one in power knows about an issue, does it matter at all? Didn't think so. Protesting makes things matter - that's the point.

:: The Squire 2:29 AM :: email this post :: ::


Statistics Can Say Anything You Want Them To

...Like, for example, that Republicans are stupid. Don't believe me? Check out this state by state list of the state average IQs and whether those states' electoral votes went to Bush or Gore in 2000.

Money quote:
We know that Republicans are mentally impaired. If they weren't, that would just make them greedy.

For the record, I don't actually believe such nonsense (I've met them and GOPers really are that greedy) but it is fun to pull out the intellectual elitism occasionally.

:: The Squire 2:10 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Thursday, May 06, 2004 ::
Saving Grace Of Dining Services

Midnight Breakfast

:: The Squire 10:45 PM :: email this post :: ::


It's Over! It's Finally Over!

And to "Friends" I say, "Good Riddance."

:: The Squire 10:38 PM :: email this post :: ::


I Can't Put It Any Better Than Trapper John @ Daily Kos

So I'll just quote him:

So let me get this right: teen girls are incapable of taking a goddamn pill that has instructions and everything on the goddamn box, but are capable of giving birth to and mothering another human being.

UPDATE: Tbogg has some great snark about this too.

:: The Squire 10:34 PM :: email this post :: ::


Ranting And Raving

Today (tonight?) Foamy goes after a sitting duck, namely, the reality show.

:: The Squire 10:25 PM :: email this post :: ::


Pet Peeve XXXI

People who have the entire Liturgy of the Eucharist memorized and say it along with the priest.

If you don't have a collar around your neck, don't say the mass. It's that simple.

:: The Squire 10:23 PM :: email this post :: ::


For Da Record

The DI weighs in on the banning of serenades.

:: The Squire 2:50 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Wednesday, May 05, 2004 ::
How Can I Not Be Me?

The British government is on a biometric ID kick, and El Reg has the ENTIRE scoop. Long story short: biometric national IDs aren't the panacea people think they are.

:: The Squire 11:13 PM :: email this post :: ::


Quotable GF

In response to the article cited below, my gf had the following comments:

" 'Show Talent?' Being slutty is showing talent?!?"

"Stripping and grinding on girls is now different than stripping and grinding on guys? Last I checked, most people considered those to be the same thing."

:: The Squire 4:36 PM :: email this post :: ::


The No-Shit Award Of The Semester Goes To...

The Board of Sorority Affairs for banning Serenades because they denegrade sorority women.

The women wear short jean skirts and tight white shirts, ripped just enough to flash their red, lace bras. They gyrate on chairs, on the floor and on each other while a crowd of men, many of them drunk, laugh and cheer them on.

It could be the opening act at a strip club, but it's a modern-day sorority serenade ? the biannual performances where sorority members bare their wares to entice hosts for the semester's parties....

Greek leaders at the University and at other Big Ten universities said efforts to monitor performances aren't working. The results, they said, are too lewd to overlook.

"They've evolved into women basically prostituting themselves for social events," said Dan Bureau, assistant dean of students and director of Greek Affairs.

This has been going on for YEARS. Even though I'm male, I consider myself a feminist and was often appalled by the dress sorority women wore to serenades. As I'm not greek I was not privileged enough to see one, but I heard all I needed from my gf who will be moving out of her non-greek pseudo-sorority house (yes, that's a mouthful) after finals. Serenades furthered the objectification of women and promoted stereotypes about sororities. That this is only being addressed now not only speaks to the basal nature of sorority culture but also does nothing but confirm the stereotype that sorority women aren't the most perceptive people.

Of course, frat guys interviewed by the DI reveal themselves to be male chauvinist pigs...

Several fraternity members said they don't want to lose a tradition they love. They argued that serenades in their current form are fine.

"I don't think the girls appeared degraded, and serenades were fun," said Mike Mueller, sophomore in LAS and fraternity member.

Many sorority members said they agree.

"I think it's unfair that they are getting rid of serenades without asking us what we want," said Brittany Knott, sophomore in business. "I think serenades are both a way to show talent and to impress guys."

And the sorority women both don't understand what they themselves are doing and, this one at least, enables herself to be further objectified.

Apparently Serenades are supposed to be replaced with something, but I'm not sure how the new activity or some other currently benign greek social activity will be kept from degenerating into a lewd display of drunken debauchery.

UPDATE: Interestingly, the online DI has a different headline for the article than the print DI. The online version reads "Serenades revamped at Illinois" which is both overly positive and an outright lie, as no replacements have been put forth yet. The print version has something along the lines of "Board abolishes Serenades." Once I get a DI in front of me I'll put in the correct headline.

Me thinks that the DI is trying not to alarm the greek alumns with lots of cash. Why they're playing favorites I don't understand, though.

UPDATE UPDATE: The title on the physical paper reads "Greeks [sic] leaders stop serenades."

:: The Squire 2:43 PM :: email this post :: ::


Squire's Postulate

The scientific usefulness of a psychology experiment is directly proprotional to it how unethical it is.

:: The Squire 2:26 PM :: email this post :: ::


:: Tuesday, May 04, 2004 ::

Political Ad Aimed At College Males

Watch "The American Dream? No, Just John Ashcroft's" and you'll understand.

Note: Not for the prudish among you.

:: The Squire 8:26 PM :: email this post :: ::


Super Cool

When I get back to skool in the fall, I get to do a ride-along with the local medical helicopter, AirLife.

It does pay to know the right people...and have the right certifications...

:: The Squire 7:34 PM :: email this post :: ::


Required Reading

Dave Neiwert, in his ongoing Oklahoma City, 9/11, and the Face of Terror series, is currently addressing Sept. 11th's foreshadowing by the Oklahoma City bombing. As it's a very long article I won't try to summarise here, but as voters you all should read it. Everyone should have this level of knowledge of the nature of terrorism, even if the current administration doesn't.

:: The Squire 2:51 PM :: email this post :: ::


We Need More Of These

David Brock launches Media Matters for America, a non-for-profit that watches and corrects the filth coming out of the conservative hack-jobs in this country.

:: The Squire 2:10 PM :: email this post :: ::


Six Months And Counting

Remember, regime change IS possible!

:: The Squire 2:07 PM :: email this post :: ::


Quotable Professor

"Oedipus - the ultimate Mama's Boy." -Prof. R. Scott Garner

:: The Squire 1:48 PM :: email this post :: ::



For those of you who loved the Crimson Room (and for those who haven't escaped yet, don't lose hope yet!) comes the next room - the Viridian Room.

:: The Squire 10:56 AM :: email this post :: ::


Last Day Of Classes Tomorrow!

But that isn't a good thing, because Finals start Friday. At least we get a meaningful reading day this semester.

:: The Squire 10:12 AM :: email this post :: ::



Yesterday, with the blessing of the Chemistry Advising office, I went to see one of the Asst. Deans for the College of LAS. I to challenge the new rule for minors in LAS and she was to tell me "No," which is exactly what happened. Now I have to go see the Dean herself and hopefully she'll overturn the ruling. That means I have to make an appointment first, though.

:: The Squire 10:11 AM :: email this post :: ::


:: Sunday, May 02, 2004 ::

Surreal... Like Hats For Clowns

As background, the everyday happenings of weebl and sometimes weebl's friend bob is a cartoon series that appears on MTV UK and, fortunately, online as well. Seeing as it's British humor, it can only be considered odd.

Anyhow, before becoming a member of Team Laser Explosion, Weebl found out that women really do speak a different language. I'm not sure, but there might be a Teen Girl Squad reference in this episode.

:: The Squire 10:10 PM :: email this post :: ::


Limit on Wisconsin-Madison's Revelries

Only four kegs per household.

The keg crackdown for the annual Mifflin Street block party near the University of Wisconsin still gives each apartment between 700 and 800 beers. And the block is lined with wood-frame houses divided into apartments, giving some addresses as many as 16 kegs.

But police said what sounds like a lot of beer is much less than what has been available in the past. Last year, some houses had as many 50 kegs and were essentially operating unlicensed taverns out of their kitchens and front porches, acting Madison Police Assistant Chief Luis Yudice said.

I really wonder when these people study. Setting up a party, working to pay for the kegs, then sleeping off the hangover and cleaning up the mess must take a humongous chunk of time.

Then again, they're probably business majors...

:: The Squire 7:40 PM :: email this post :: ::


More Homework For You

As if you didn't have enough to do this week before finals, David Neiwert, the author of the well-reguarded Rush, Newspeak, and Fascism series, has a new project. The first installment of Oklahoma City, 9/11, and the Face of Terror is out, and the second installment was recently published. Go read it.

:: The Squire 7:08 PM :: email this post :: ::


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